Home >mint-lounge >features >Narendra Modi app update: It isn’t more of the same

Prime Minister Narendra Modi understands technology quite well. Apple’s chief executive officer Tim Cook met with the prime minister on his visit to India last week, and unveiled the updated Narendra Modi official smartphone app. This free-to-download-and-use smartphone app lets users stay connected with the latest news (admittedly, what the government wants you to know), updates on initiatives, as well as a host of other vaults of information. The Narendra Modi app is now available for Apple iOS, Microsoft Windows and Google Android smartphones.

The official Narendra Modi app has been available for smartphones since mid-2015. But the latest update brings some significant changes. The initial version required you to sign in with your credentials, but the latest update removes that step. Also, there are interface and usability improvements, though the basic idea of getting the information across remains the same.

Here is a quick look at the five standout elements of the updated app.

My Network: Get your views across

Perhaps, the most important addition to the Narendra Modi app is the My Network section. As a user, you sign into the network, also known as NM Network, and can participate in forum discussions as well as be a part of different groups. The idea is to give users a platform to share their ideas, views and deliberate with fellow citizens from across the country. This is in sync with the government’s vision of participative governance, and enhances the idea of volunteering for causes.

Feed: All the news

When you open the app, the very first screen that you get to is called Feed. It is more of a constantly updated timeline, with a mix of news and updates on initiatives. The layout includes big visuals, and clear and easy-to-read fonts.

Article views: Smarter options

When you tap on any news piece or article, what you get are a bunch of smart-view options. The default is the standard web view, with headlines or snippets and crisp information about any event. Then there is a Smart view, which removes any images or videos on the page and retains just the text—handy on sluggish mobile networks or phones that don’t have very powerful hardware. Then there is the Picture view, which is essentially a scrolling photo gallery. The Social view is a short, one-line summary of the entire story, and the idea is to get users to share that with their friends on social media.

Interests: Follow what interests you

When you are setting up the app for the first time, you can set what topics to follow. These include the Mann Ki Baat radio program, governance initiatives, media coverage and more. Based on what you select, the ‘Feed’ section is updated regularly to show new information and content.

Sections: This isn’t your typical boring app

The Narendra Modi app is divided into various crisp sections, such as infographics, interviews, global recognition and more. There are options to send a message to the Prime Minister, and also an inbox which will show any messages by the PM or the government for the citizens. There is also a Blogs section, though that has not been updated since September 2015, at the time of writing this.

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